02 March, 2017
The Claimant was shopping in a supermarket and cut his hand on the top of a mobile free standing ladder rack display stand. As he reached up to the top shelf, he brought his hand back down on to the stand and in doing so suffered a laceration to the back of his hand.
The question before the Court was whether the Defendant had failed to take reasonable measures to ensure visitors to the premises were safe.
The Defendant maintained that the display stand was fully inspected after the accident and was found to be hazard free. There was no obvious hazard or danger to shoppers and there had been no previous accidents involving the unit.
The Judge at trial agreed that there was nothing dangerous about the display stand and there was simply a hard edge which had come into contact with the Claimant's fragile skin. The presence of the hard edge was not a hazard which give rise to a common duty of care. The Claim was dismissed.
The free standing ladder rack display which was the subject of this claim is a typical unit which can be seen in retail shops across the country. The injury occurred as a result of a simple accident. The Court took a common sense approach and found that the Defendant cannot be liable for each and every possible injury that occurs on its premises.
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